Posts Tagged ‘Ray Bitar’

Poker Panic ’11

by , Apr 15, 2011 | 3:40 pm

The arrest warrant in rem in the parallel civil forfeiture case (11 Civ. 2564) involving PokerStars, FullTilt, and UB is out. This is the instrumentality through which the domain names were redirected by the FBI to the notices up on the sites. The only sites affected by this are:,,,, and

The warrant directs the .com registrar (VeriSign) to direct the name servers to the addresses specified in the warrant or such other name servers or IP addresses as directed by the FBI.

These domains have been locked by the registry (and by the registrar in the case of – this domain remains with GoDaddy pending a final disposition of the domain seizure case in Kentucky) and now cannot be moved without a court order or the consent of the Department of Justice. I understand that the rest of the domains (save and except for are registered with foreign registrars.

The 52-page (Shocking?) Indictment that Shook the Poker World

by , | 2:34 pm

Here’s the actual indictment, in the case of DOJ vs. Scheinberg et al.

UPDATE: Sorry for the bad link … have put it in a more easily accessible place via Scribd:

UPDATE: Going live on Donkdown Radio to try to help online poker degens make sense of it all.

More than Rumorati: Full Tilt Boycotting NAPT?

Branding Wars escalate

by , Feb 17, 2010 | 4:54 pm

Boycotting may be too strong a word … “avoiding” could work, as could “snubbing”, as could “pissing off its own players by telling them they can’t go.”

Supposedly, highly reliable sources are saying, Full Tilt brass in Ireland are telling Full Tilt-branded American (and non-American) pros that they are not allowed to play in the Venetian Deep Stacks main event … as it is part of the newly launched NAPT, presented by What, are you guys not buying their claim that Stars-dot-net is different than Stars-dot-com? Interesting …

We hinted that something was coming on The Poker Beat a couple weeks ago. Kudos to ESPN’s @GaryWise1 for digging up the confirmation on the above. Listen below to a 5-minute excerpt of the bubbling under.

Apparently, Howard Lederer really has stepped away from calling the operational shots at Tilt, and it’s totally news to Bitar & Co. that Full Tilt pros were ever stepping foot in non-Tilt branded events, such as the PCA (PokerStars) and Aruba (UB). Sure enough, the Hollywood snub at the Sharon Osborne Trash Talk Championship of the World (at the Hard Rock) charity tournament was a sign of more serious fissures in the poker world to come.

Kinda funny … because these sites have been so worried how a new Harrah’s-branded online gaming presence would negatively affect other online sites branding opportunities at the World Series of Poker, and now their reaction to the threat seems on track to becoming a self-fulfilling prophesy.


Forbes Cover Story: US government cracking down on online poker?

by , Feb 10, 2010 | 4:58 pm

A cover story in the latest issue of Forbes magazine (the main story asking if Al Qaeda is bankrupt) features an article discussing the US government’s possible crackdown on online poker with the impending June 1 deadline for the UIGEA to be enforced. The article can be found on their website here and includes a slide show of the big names behind online poker.

Jason Newitt Sues Full Tilt, Lederer, et al.

Another Ex-FTP Employee Suits Up

by , Sep 14, 2009 | 4:48 pm

The Full Tilt Poker legal team is busy. On the heels of the presumably still-unresolved Clonie Gowen $40 million lawsuit, another case was filed in the Nevada court system on September 11, 2009. This is the only information available thus far:

Jason Newitt
Tiltware; Full Tilt Poker; Pocket Kings Ltd.; Pocket Kings Consulting Ltd.; Raymond Bitar; Howard Lederer

Contract action. Plaintiff says he was unfairly fired, and that his distribution payments were unfairly ceased. Defendants then took control of his ownership.

Newitt was the former Tilt employee responsible for inadvertently forwarding Howard Lederer e-mail about Jimmy “Gobboboy” Fricke (the “freak and very weird dude”) — an “oops” that revealed a little something about Lederer and Bitar’s positions and powers within the Full Tilt money machine. Whether or not this had anything to do with Newitt’s dismissal and the subsequent lawsuit remains to be seen until we get our sneaky little hands on the court documents.

Clonie vs. Full Tilt: Case Dismissed?

Maybe kinda-sorta, but not really

by , May 7, 2009 | 12:59 pm

2+2 is speculating that “Clonie Gowan’s suit against Full Tilt dismissed” [sic].

PokerNewsDaily followed suit:

With the majority of the case being dismissed with prejudice and only Tiltware, Bitar and Lederer eligible for any further action, Gowen’s lawsuit appears to be dead at this time.

And then PokerNews reported “Gowen Lawsuit Against Full Tilt Dismissed”.

These hedlines are for the most part inaccurate, and at a minimum misleading. Clonie’s lawsuit is still alive … the courts have simply stripped out some irrelevant defendants while considering motions for expedited discovery, and her team has 30 days to amend their complaints around the still relevant defendants, i.e. Tiltware, Howard Lederer, and Ray Bitar. These recent rulings may be considered setbacks, but it’s not like she has to start from scratch to “refile”.

Read the court documents for yourself:

Gowen Motions Denied
Gowen Hearing Vacated

Now granted, these are a little confusing, so Pokerati has made half-hearted attempts to contact attorneys on both sides of the case, and have received no response from either. We’ve also contacted insiders on both sides of the case, whom literally say the exact same thing: “It’s definitely not over”. To be sure, on both sides, no one’s celebrating nor stomping about wildly screaming “Appeal!” bemoaning these most recent decisions.

In the meantime, to help us understand, Pokerati has brought in an independent, poker-savvy legal expert from a neighboring state to help translate:


Clonie vs. Full Tilt

by , Nov 15, 2008 | 7:38 am

Chewed up, spit out? Clonie Gowen is challenging the most fearsome of Full Tilt avatars in Clark County Court.

We all knew something fishy was going on with Clonie and Full Tilt, right? And we’ve always wondered how exactly Full Tilt operates — seriously it’s kinda a mystery, even to people who work for them — and now, with Clonie Gowen suing four different companies connected to the game so many play with the pros, we should find out quite a bit of interesting info.

As far as I know, this is the first time any online poker biz that operates in the grayish world of processing money from American players (really really light gray, but still … ) will have to show its stuff publicly. Even Ultimate Bet/Absolute, with all the audits and investigations hasn’t really had to show anything it doesn’t want to to anyone outside its own semi-corporate family.

Um, hole-card cameras in the courtroom?

Official court docs here.

Gowen v. Tiltware LLC, et al.,
Cycalona Gowen
Defendant: Full Tilt Poker, Tiltware LLC, Pocket Kings Ltd., Kolyma Corporation, A.V.V., Raymond J. Bitar, Howard Lederer, Andrew Bloch, Phillip Ivey, Christopher Ferguson, John Juanda, Phillip Gordon, Erick Lindgren, Erik Seidel, Jennifer Harman-Traniello, Michael Matusow, Allen Cunningham, Gus Hansen and Patrick Antonious

Case Number: 2:2008cv01581
Filed: November 14, 2008

Court: Nevada District Court
Office: Las Vegas Office [ Court Info ]
County: Clark
Presiding Judge: Judge Robert C. Jones
Referring Judge: Magistrate Judge Robert J. Johnston

Nature of Suit: Contract – Other Contract
Cause: 28:1332 Diversity-Other Contract
Jurisdiction: Diversity
Jury Demanded By: Plaintiff

They’re talking about it on 2+2, and the summary of her allegations below comes from the Hendon Mob: